Qureshi hopes trust deficit will be bridged in Indo-Pak talks

Qureshi hopes trust deficit will be bridged in Indo-Pak talks

"Trust deficit will be bridged by talks during which we will discuss outstanding issues," Qureshi, who will hold parleys with Krishna here on July 15, told a press conference after his 25-minute telephonic conversation with the External Affairs Minister.

However, he said normalisation of bilateral ties would be an "uphill task" and nobody should expect "miracles overnight."

"I will not create any false hopes. I am an optimist yet a realist. I recognise the challenges, I recognise the difficulties. I recognise the trust deficit. It is an uphill task.
"Don't expect miracles overnight. Good thing is that on both sides we have democracies and democracies believe in negotiations, talks and parleys," Qureshi said adding "we had a very good discussion and we will build on it. There is no quick fixes."

His remarks came on being asked about the two sides reportedly having come close to a deal on issues related to Siachen and Sir Creek during the earlier dialogue process.
Qureshi made it clear that the two sides were going into the talks with an open mind and positive approach without having any false hopes.

Prior to the meeting between the two ministers, Home Minister P Chidambaram will visit Islamabad on June 26 for the meeting of SAARC Interior Ministers. He will be accompanied by Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao, who will meet her Pakistani counterpart Salman Bashir to finalise modalities for the talks between the two Foreign Ministers.

Qureshi said he would also visit Delhi after his meeting here with Krishna for the next round of talks.

He described the upcoming talks with Krishna as an "important step forward in bilateral relations."

The Pakistan Foreign Minister said he had begun consultations with the civil and military leadership to forge national consensus on resolving outstanding issues with India.

Qureshi on Monday met a group of former Pakistani Foreign Ministers and Ambassadors as well as Pakistan's Indus Water Commissioner Jamaat Ali Shah for consultations. He said he also consulted national security institutions last night.

Sources said that Qureshi had on Monday gone to the Army General Headquarters in Rawalpindi, where he held consultations with army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani and ISI chief Lt Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha.

The sources also described Qureshi's conversation with Krishna as "very positive."
Qureshi said terrorism is an issue that has affected India and Pakistan and both countries are victim. The best way forward in tackling terrorism is through mutual understanding and cooperation, he added.

The Pakistani Foreign Minister said he would be seeking guidance from President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani on the substantive issues.

He said the approach of Prime Ministers Manmohan Singh and Gilani was "very productive" and their interaction in Thimphu on the sidelines of the SAARC summit last month was "frank, cordial and forward looking".

"We will discuss all issues of concern to India and Pakistan. There was no discussion on structure. I am presuming both sides are comfortable. Structure is in place," Qureshi said.

"We will have to sit and resolve. We will not allow acts of terrorism to impede the process. We will have to build on it to a level that it (dialogue process) becomes irreversible," he said.

He said there was no bar on bringing to the table issues of mutual concern like the water dispute.

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